How Can Love Be Explained?

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Although there are many different explanations of love within psychology, the two theories of love I will explore in this essay will be Hendrick and Hendrick's theory of love (1986) and Sternberg's triangular theory of love. Hendrick and Hendrick's theory of love contains six different styles which explain how love develops and forms. The six styles are logical style (love is treated as a practical logical decision making process), game playing (this is when love is treated as if it were a game or some kind of competition), the altruistic style (sacrifices are made i.e. putting the other persons happiness first, the erotic style (when partners both desire hedonism and sexual pleasure) and finally the companionate style (when partners share loving affection and friendship with develops over time). Hogg and Vaughan used Sternberg's theory as they used it to explain different types of love, therefore expanding his theory and ideas', meaning the reliability of the theory is increased. We can also apply this theory to all different kinds of relationships such as elderly, young and homosexual, as all of these relationships will involve commitment, intimacy and passion. Therefore we can generalise this explanation to the majority of relationships as it relates to factors that are not affected by age or gender. However, despite this, the theory does not explain how love is developed. The theory identifies a particular type of love but neglects to explain how this developed in the first place. Nevertheless, Sternberg attempted to combat this by extending his theory to take into account the interpretations that people develop into what they believe love is. Also a perfect balance of love is substantially difficult to achieve. Sternburg believed that the type and strength of these three individual components. The ideal balance situation would exist when each side of the love triangle was experienced with sufficient intensity. However, such perfect balance is difficult to...
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